ECE 460
Optical Imaging

Section Type Times Days Location Instructor
AB1 LAB 1300 - 1650 W   3016 ECE Building  Hassaan Majeed
AB2 LAB 1500 - 1750 T   3016 ECE Building  Hassaan Majeed
AL1 LEC 1100 - 1220 T R   2074 ECE Building  Gabriel Popescu
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Official Description Scalar fields, geometrical optics, wave optics, Gaussian beams, Fourier optics, spatial and temporal coherence, microscopy, interference chromatic and geometric aberrations, Jones matrices, waveplates, electromagnetic fields, and electro-optic and acousto-optic effects. Laboratory covers numerical signal processing, spectroscopy, ray optics, diffraction, Fourier optics, microscopy, spatial coherence, temporal coherence, polarimetry, fiber optics, electro-optic modulation and acousto-optic modulation. Course Information: 4 undergraduate hours. 4 graduate hours. Prerequisite: ECE 329; credit or concurrent registration in ECE 313.
Subject Area Electromagnetics, Optics and Remote Sensing
Course Prerequisites Credit in ECE 329
Credit or concurrent registration in STAT 400 or ECE 313 or STAT 410
Course Directors Gabriel Popescu
Detailed Description and Outline

To introduce students to the design principles, hardware and laboratory practice of computational optical imaging systems.


  • Geometric optics and field propagation
  • Fourier analysis of field propagation
  • Fourier analysis of physical imaging
  • Field properties: Intensity and polarization
  • Field properties: Spectra and coherence
  • Detectors, focal planes, sampling and information
  • Aliasing, holography, interferometery
  • Multiplex imaging, active imaging systems
  • Detection and imaging applications
Lab Projects
  • Geometric optics
  • Fourier optics (spatial filtering)
  • Fourier optics (field transformations)
  • Polarization, coherence, and spectra
  • Optical detectors, digital transformations
  • Aliasing and holography
  • Interferometric imaging, 3D imaging
  • IR sensors and spectrosopy

Saleh and Tiech, Fundamentals to Photonics, 1st ed., Wiley.

Course Goals

The goals of ECE 460 Optical Imaging are to:

1. Develop an understanding of optical diffraction and image formation

2. Develop an understanding of the measurable properties of optical fields, including polarization, spectra, coherence and intensity

3. Develop an understanding of electronic image sensors and intensity sampling

4. Provide hands on exposure to elementary and advanced imaging systems, including Fourier filtering systems, focal planes, and imaging systems.

Instructional Objectives

ECE 460 combines lectures, discussions, analytic exercises (homework and prelabs), and laboratory exercises to provide an integrated analytic and hands-on understanding of imaging systems. The course consists of three segments: (1) field properties, diffraction and imaging, (2) sensors and sampling, and (3) example systems.

1. At the completion of the segment (1), students should be comfortable with the concept of spatial frequency and multidimensional Fourier analysis. They should have an intuitive understanding the action of lenses, gratings, prisms, and other optical components. They should be able to design, assemble, and analyze basic imaging systems. They should be able to analytically calculate and numerically model spatial field distributions given boundary conditions. These abilities will be evaluated through prelab homework and laboratory exercises. (a, b, c, e, k, m)

2. At the completion of segment (2), students should understand the physical processes of generating light and converting light intensities to electronic signals on focal planes. They should have laboratory experience with CCD detectors and imagers. They should understand the origins of aliasing and other sampling artifacts, and they should be aware of physical and digital processes for counteracting sampling limitations. (a, b, c, e, k, l, m)

3. Segment (3) provides students with hands-on experience in image formation, multidimensional imaging, active illumination, and optical design. At the completion of this segment students should have solid basic understanding of the analog to digital interface in imaging systems and confidence in design and analysis of imaging systems. (a, b, c, d, g, i, j, k, m)

Last updated: 8/28/2014